Is Working as a Freelancer the Best Choice for Your Career?
Guest Post from Cassie Phillips
Working from home as a freelancer is an increasingly popular career choice. Many people find that freelancing suits them and their lifestyle far better than a traditional nine-to-five office job does. People can follow their dreams as freelancers. And the freedom and autonomy freelancing offers are particularly enticing to many people too.
That being said, freelancing isn’t for everyone. Just as with any other career choice, it comes with its unique set of challenges. A lack of motivation, procrastination, distractions and not having others take your career seriously can all be major problems for freelancers. So before you make such a life-altering decision, you need to figure out whether working as a freelancer is the best choice for you and your career.
The Advantages of Working as a Freelancer
Freelancing has a lot to recommend it. One of the best things about freelancing is the freedom and autonomy it offers. It’s one of the few careers that allows you to design your life to suit your wants and needs, as well as those of your family.
Flexible Work Hours
As a freelancer, you’re not forced to work traditional hours. Instead, you get to choose when you work. So, if you’re a night owl, you can start working at 7 p.m. This allows you to work when you’re most productive, which means you’ll get more done in less time.
Work Where You Want
Freelancing also allows you to work wherever suits you. You won’t be stuck in a stuffy office surrounded by noisy co-workers. If you want fresh air, you can work outside or next to an open window. You can listen to music while you work. If you prefer peace and quiet, you can shut work in your home office or study. You can even work in a park or a coffee shop if you’d like.
Given the freedom and autonomy that comes with freelancing, mothers often find it suits them much better than a traditional office job. So if you have children, freelancing from home might be perfect for you. You can schedule your work and your children’s activities in a way that they don’t clash. It will take hard work, but you can have a fulfilling career and still have some of the perks of being a stay-at-home mother.
Do You Have Enough Self-Discipline?
None of us is perfectly disciplined all the time. We’ve all had nights where we didn’t feel like cooking and ate cookies for dinner or ended up reading a book on the couch instead of going to the gym. Freelancing can be quite similar. No matter how much you love your work, there will always be the odd occasion when you find it tough to sit down and work. There will also be times when you find yourself procrastinating.
While this isn’t a problem if it happens occasionally, you must have discipline if you want to work as a freelancer. Without a boss watching your every move, you’ll have to force yourself to work. Luckily, many tips and tricks can make it easier. Many books and websites offer excellent advice on the topic, so have a look for some of those.
Do You Have the Right Tools?
If you want to work from home as a freelancer, there are a few tools that you’ll need. You’ll need a comfortable place to work, a computer or tablet to work on and a reliable internet connection. If you don’t have a reliable internet connection at home, you can always work in a place that has public WiFi.
You need to protect your laptop or tablet if you do work in a public place, such as a public library or coffee shop. Public WiFi is usually very vulnerable to hackers, so you need to use reputable security software. Install anti-virus software to avoid malware and network security such as a Virtual Private Network (VPN) and a firewall to secure your internet connection and keep hackers out. It will be devastating if you lose all your precious work when a virus or hacker wipes all your data off your laptop or tablet.
Do You Have a Backup Plan?
This isn’t a particularly pleasant topic, but it’s still of paramount importance. If you intend to earn a living as a freelancer, you should have a backup plan. Don’t expect to make an amazing amount of money as soon as you start freelancing. It can take quite a while to earn a good reputation or establish a successful business, so you might need another way to earn an income initially.
Unless your business blossoms immediately or you become a best-selling author overnight (it’s very unlikely), you need to have another way of supporting yourself. This doesn’t mean that you should give up on your dreams, it just means that you need to find something to support you while you get your dream started. Achieving your goals and making your dreams come true usually takes passion, hard work and patience. You should have a look at some other ways to earn money online while you build your dream career.
Is Freelancing the Best Choice for You?
Working from home as a freelancer can be an incredible career. It can help you follow your passion and fulfill many of your dreams while making a living. So if you answered “yes” to the questions above or can make a few changes to answer “yes,” working as a freelancer may be the best choice for your career. It may also be the best choice for your life in general.
Unfortunately, some people don’t take people who work from home as freelancers or remote employees seriously. But you don’t need to fall victim to this type of bullying. What’s important is creating the life you want and following your dreams. And if you can do that by working from home, then that’s what you should be doing.
Are you a freelancer who works from home? How has it changed your life and career? Please let us know by leaving a comment below.
About the author: Cassie Phillips is a cybersecurity blogger who has been working as a freelance writer for several years now, so she understands the challenges freelancers often face. However, freelancing has helped her create the life she wants to live.
Leslie Truex is an ideaphoric writer, speaker, entrepreneur, social worker and mom trying to do it all from the comfort of her home. Since 1998, she's been helping others create careers they love by providing work-at-home information and resources through Work-At-Home Success.
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